Monday, 11 May 2015

ARC Review: The Pretty App (App #2) by Katie Sise

Goodreads Summary:

Poor Blake Dawkins! She's rich, she's gorgeous, and she's the queen bee of Harrison High. The girls want to be her; the boys want to—okay, enough said. But it turns out Blake’s life is not so perfect—just talk to her dad, who constantly reminds her that she's not up to par, or to her ex-bff, Audrey, who doesn't even look her in the eye.

Then Harrison—and every other high school in America—becomes obsessed with posting selfies on the ubiquitous Pretty App. Next: Leo, an adorable transfer student, arrives at Harrison and begins to show Blake that maybe being a queen bee doesn't mean being a queen bitch. And though Audrey suspects somebody’s playing foul, Blake finds herself catapulted to internet fame after being voted one of the prettiest girls in the country. She's whisked away to star in a reality show—in Hollywood, on live TV. 

But she doesn’t know who to trust. Because everybody on the show wants to win.

And nobody is there to make friends.

The Boyfriend App author Katie Sise spins another irresistible tale of technology, secrets, and big-time romance in this story of what it takes to be #trulybeautiful.

Title: The Pretty App (App #2)
Author: Katie Sise
Genre: Contemporary, Romance, Chick Lit
Format: Paperback, ARC
Pages: 352 pages
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Source: ARC was received in exchanged for an honest review from the publisher

Mirror mirror on the wall who's the prettiest of them all?

I read The Boyfriend App last year (Review Here) and loved it! So when I saw The Pretty App coming out I was intrigue as we get the point of view of Blake, the mean girl in the last book who I felt like there there was some missing plot holes about her friendship with Audrey.

While this book can be read as a stand alone, though I think its better to read The Boyfriend App as you get a better the story and character building that was established in the first book. Also there are minor spoilers for The Boyfriend App.

This book takes place the following semester from the event in The Boyfriend App where the company Public (their version of Apple) has a new app contest called the Pretty App. Think of it as Americas Next Top Modal meets Instagram.

In The Boyfriend App, it is established that Blake is a pretty, rich and popular mean girl with a lot of power in her hands as her dad is a politician and her uncle is the principal of the school. I hated her trough most part the boyfriend app as she was a flipping bully (physical, verbal, you name it she did it) and a MEGA B!TC#! Noticed I say the word MOST as there was this one part where she see a bit different side of her that I assumed was foreshadow her story aka this book.

I surprisingly like this sequel and Blake's character more as we see this self-centered mess up mean girl turn her life around.

No I didn't like her from page one as I already know her character in 'The Boyfriend App' but she grew on me as the book progresses. The more I read about her the more I feel pity for her. We learn that underneath that mean girl she's actually very insecure and feels abandon by the one she loves (her sister and best friend). With that she bullies other kids as because she's 'the popular girl' and feels guilty with her actions and even makes up for some of her bad choices.

She's a more than meets the eyes character as thought she does not think of herself as smart as her sort-of-ex-bestfriend Audrey, she's still intelligent and have some of the snarkiest lines in the book (and you know me, I love a good snarky narration).

I like the part where she talks about make up and how it gives her confident as I'm a make up girl and I agree make up can make you feel confident. But I love the part when she looks in the mirror at her naked face and talk about how she feels. That's beauty! You feel pretty when you feel confident in your own skin. This is a powerful message that I hope that everyone will take from reading this book is to be comfortable in your own skin. 

We learn more about Blake's family, her dad who is a 'clean' politician who only has no faith in Blake and values her for her good looks, her mum who lives as her husband 'trophy wife 'and in his shadow and her sister older sister Samantha who cut her off from her life when she went to college has problems and secrets of her own. Reading more about her family makes me feel bad for her as she longs for her parents to love her unconditionally and attention. I like reading about her relationship from her sister who she adores and looks up to.

Also we got to know more about her friendship with Audrey. It's establish that they used to be best friends in the last book but I felt like something was missing. We didn't know much about their history and what caused them drift apart so it was great that this book covers that loose plot hole I was looking for in 'The Boyfriend App'.

I adored Audrey in the last book and was so glad to see more of her and her computer science genies friends in this book especially Nigit as he's awesome ( and I kinda wish there was a book about him *hint *nudge *wink to the author). What I found very off was how Audrey's friends were very supportive of  Blake entering the pretty app as Blake was horrible to them in the last book.

Speaking of computer science genies friends, New Guy alert and he's swoon!

Leo is the new kid who befriends Audrey and her gang. Swoon worthy, good looking and has the brains of Audrey and her friends computer coding skills combine. Yup I like this guy the moment I first read about him. He also has a secret that I didn't see coming and made my eyes poke out and my hands drop the book.

He's flipping working for Public to spy on Audrey and the gang as well as to make sure Blake enters The Pretty App competition. To top that he is a flipping computer science child prodigy and is a judge on the pretty app pageant. Did I mentioned that he's 19 years old and is done with High School??? Dang that was a good twist I didn't see coming!

I like Blake and Leo's romance. Its very fluffy and feel good but also a rocky thanks to Leo's secrets. still I shipped them!

I like Katie Sise's style of storytelling where she intertwines our generations of obsession of technology. In 'The boyfriend app' she shows the dark side of technology. In this book she pokes fun on our love for the fifty million filters on Instagram to the iconic '#'.

Also like 'The Boyfriend App' the book was split into two parts, before and during the Pretty App competition. I like the way this book is paced out though I wish that the competition part was longer. Even so it was entertaining in a 'oh the ridiculous eye rolling things they make you do on a reality show to boost the ratings' sorta way.

Its like watching American Idol when the contestant get out of their comfort zone to film those Ford commercials.

Also reading the result of the competition was nerve wrecking as I seriously didn't know who's gonna win.  The ending was a Taylor Swift 'How You Get The Girl' song playing in my head. Happy, heart warming and feel good sweetness. I like how it ended but I still feel like something is missing from the book (again) though I'm hoping this is not the last App book! Yes the ending left me wanting more from the author!

Overall I like how tables have turn for this installment in the 'App' series and that we get the POV of an unlikely main character. Apart from this I've only read one YA that is told from the POV of a mess up mean girl (the other one is Anatomy Of a Misfit). I like Blake's character development as who she is at the end of the book is so different from start.

Its a book about real beauty, second chances and out generation's obsession for social media.

Check out The Pretty App for a fast pace, feel good fluff and laugh out loud snarks!

Also just for fun here's a #NoFilter #NoMakeup pic of me and my copy of The Pretty App!! Lol I don't know how people manages with selfies as most of mine needs like 50 million snapshots to the point my arm hurts from holding the phone still!

Till Next time

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